Bikash Yumnum : The Indian Youth footballing icon
Football is the fastest growing sports in India and in the past decades it gained huge popularity. After the Isl came into picture, the popularity increased. A number of youth talents are coming up and making the game richer and richer. One of the gems is Bikash Yumnum. He is centre back and played in different youth ranks for India. He was a graduate from the Minerva Academy and also played for Punjab FC. Currently he is playing for Indian Arrows.
The young Manipuri player’s greatest skill, the long throw-in, is being highlighted as unprecedented in Indian football, a short sighted view. Indian football’s history is rife with players with that ability and the youngster will do well to emulate them. It reminded us about the long throw of Dhanachandra Singh .
Bikash Yumnam, 17, was an unknown name in Indian football till the British daily included him in a list that also figured youngsters from Real Madrid, Barcelona, Manchester United, Arsenal, Paris Saint-Germain and many other footballing hotbeds. This list comprised the top 60 teenage potential players around the world. The list featured players like Halland and Sancho. This is for the first time a player hailing from India could make up to the list.
“Can’t believe…my BIKASH YUMNAM is the only Indian player named in this very prestigious list…WOW-kudos to my coaches,” wrote Ranjit Bajaj on Twitter. Bajaj owned Minerva Punjab FC before it renamed Punjab FC last in October 2019.
He performed well in the 2018 Asian under-16 championship where India made the quarter-finals, losing 0-1 to South Korea. It was the only goal India conceded in the competition following 0-0 draws against Iran and Indonesia. The quarter-final loss meant India were one win from qualifying for the 2019 under-17 World Cup. He also played for the Indian Arrows in the I-league and a long throw against Mohunbagan became the talk of the match.
A leading newspaper report described his style of play as “Composed on the ball, a great reader of the game, and capable of excellent, fast, long throw-ins, the teenager has already been earmarked for a quick progression to the full international side,”.
With these achievements the youth is ready to make his move in the top flight . Hope to see more magic from the Manipuri centre back in the coming years.